If you read my blogs you will know that I’ve been harping on about this for about a year now. In January 2020 Windows 7 will become unsupported by Microsoft, which means that any time a scammer, hacker or other bad actor pokes a hole in the security of Windows 7 systems, Microsoft will no longer plug that hole with updates. Continuing to use Windows 7 next year will be like playing a game of Windows roulette in which the security of your data, personal information, and anything that you do on your computer online will become more and more sieve-like over time. You will also struggle to connect to and use your computer with any new external or internal technology as Microsoft will stop providing the necessary support and drivers to connect to Windows 7. So for example if you want to buy a new printer or use a new application you may find that they simply will not work.
What are the Options?
Option One: Upgrade to Windows 10 on Your Existing Computer
Windows 10 was first released in 2015 so the likelihood is that if your computer is running Windows 7 it is about four years old and running woefully out of date hardware. There is a good chance that your existing hardware may not support Windows 10 in a productive way, or at all. However if your computer was high spec (read very expensive) to begin with we may be able to upgrade both your Hard Drive to an SSD and your Operating System to Windows 10. This would cost around $680*.
Option Two: Upgrade to a New Computer
The second and more reasonable option would be to buy a new computer. All hardware has a lifespan so if you can afford to, now is a very good time to make that move. The standard, good quality laptops and PCs that we stock and recommend range from $1150 to $1560* and upwards for high spec models. You may find cheaper computers running Windows 10 elsewhere which would be preferable to continuing to use Windows 7, but you’ll get what you pay for, certainly don’t spend money on anything with an AMD A processor.
Option Three: Move to a NUC
A NUC (Next Unit of Computing) is a tiny little desktop PC, perfect for users with space restrictions in their physical work space. Check out my blog about them. They work exactly like a PC tower, connecting to your monitor etc and with the same space on the hard drive, but taking up a fraction of the space on your desk. They also happen to cost a bit less – we stock an i3 and an i5 model for $999 and $1299* respectively. Again they have SSD Hard Drives and run Windows 10.
Option Four: Upgrade to a Refurbished Desktop PC Computer
All computers are not created equal; a three year old, quality machine, running Windows 10 with an SSD, is going to be vastly preferable to any computer running Windows 7. This is a great option to get a high quality machine for a discounted price. We can currently provide refurbished desktop PCs for $360 to $450*, depending on the specs.
Option Five: Upgrade to a Refurbished Laptop
Refurbished laptops seem to be somewhat harder to get and somewhat more expensive than PCs but we could certainly look into the stock our suppliers have available at your request. It is easier to find them in screen sizes of less than 15″. They will be cheaper than a new laptop but more expensive than a refurbished PC. We would only sell good quality – they would have an SSD and Windows 10.
- Data Transfer: Switching to a new computer will often involve transferring your existing files and accounts to the new one. This usually takes about an hour of labour, though it can be more. We like to set them running so while a transfer takes up to a day, we only charge for the time we spend on it.
- Office 365: This is the best way to access the Microsoft Office programs like Word, Excel, and Outlook etc. It’s an annual subscription rather than buying it outright. The applications are automatically updated to the latest versions and it comes with free Cloud storage so you don’t have to store everything on your hard drive. Your Cloud-stored files are accessible from any internet connected computer anywhere. If you already have an Office 365 account, or the license key of your existing Office package, we can transfer this to your new computer.
- ESET Antivirus: This is the security software we recommend. In fact we manage our clients’ subscriptions to it so you don’t need to enter any credit card details or carry out any renewals yourself. We email you when it’s due for renewal and if you would like us to, renew it remotely and invoice you. If you already have an ESET license we can transfer this to your new computer.
If you’re still on Windows 7 it’s quite important that you start thinking about this now. The holiday season is only four months away and we certainly advise that you not be using Windows 7 next year. We do get busy in the lead up to the end of the year. We also predict that the prices will rise significantly over the next six months because many computer companies are based in the US and use parts made in China, so the deteriorating trade situation between them will have an impact.
Please contact us to discuss your requirements and options for this upgrade, we’d love to hear from you 🙂
24B Dick Street Cambridge ~ 07 827 7119 ~ firstname.lastname@example.org
*Note: prices include GST and are subject to change